Wednesday, June 16, 2010
India is as amazing and mystical and fascinating as I ever imagined. It is as dirty and poor and traditional as is reported. And yet between the two I find hope. First, in the government that is a democracy and continues to right itself without overthrow and police itself for mass corruption. Second, in the emphasis placed on education, the strong work ethic, and self sufficiency in providing basic needs. This is an old, old country and, for it to be non-violent and people driven, change comes slowly, very slowly. But there is a constant striving for the next generation to do better.
Cities are cities and New Delhi has slums similar to China, with too many people living at a sub-subsistence level where there is little work. They were drawn to the cities like people in South Africa with the hope of riches. Many are drawn to America, too, and continue to provide for family out of the relative wealth they have here. Families are of utmost importance throughout the culture.
CCS has a wonderful system of housing volunteers together. We had a terrific group, as you would expect from like minded people caring for others.
India has much more to explore. I hope to go back very soon to see the tourist sites, eat more of the fantastic food, bask in the colorful women’s dress and the warm smiles of welcome.